A lot of people tend to find it hard to pick out just one favourite film, because there are so many great films out there that peak at greatness and all have their own endearing qualities. But for me? It’s always been an easy choice; Chaplin. A film about Charlie Chaplin, of course, based on his autobiography and directed by the late Richard Attenborough.
Charlie Chaplin is an icon to many, and he certainly is to me. This film brought out even more love for Chaplin when it came out back in 1992, it was a cinematic masterpiece, and a brilliantly written film that gave the true account of Charlie’s life, according to himself.
Down and on his last chance, Robert Downey JR had been in and out of jail, after being given this piece he knew that what he did was going to mean a lot to people – hell, it took a lot for the role as Chaplin to be given to an American… but no one other than Robert Downey JR could play him. He locked himself away for 18 months, learnt the proper cockney lingo (one of the most endearing parts being when RDJ say ‘Betta’, dropping his T’s and then smiling as he corrects himself “Better” he echoes, in a more delicate voice). Downey also spent those 18 months studying Chaplin films, getting the walk, the acrobatics in, the timing of his jokes, the delivery – everything that made Charlie Chaplin great, Downey picked it up. But one of the most prominent things, that couldn’t have been taught, were the looks – and as Charlie’s own daughter put it (who plays Chaplin’s mother in the film) “He has has the Chaplin eyes” and even went further to say that when hugging RDJ dressed as her father, it felt like actually hugging her dad.
It’s a fantastic film, great for anyone who loves a biopic, and for anyone who generally loves films. It’s cast is fantastic, ranging from Dan Akroyd to Anthony Hopkins, and the script was written perfectly.